The Northern Pike was named our state fish by the 1969 Legislative Assembly. The Pike has a long body and long snout with large teeth. They are marked with horizontal spots and never have more than 5 pores on each side of the lower jaw. Pike are found in sluggish streams and shallow, weedy places in lakes, as well as in cold, clear, rocky waters. Pike are typical ambush predators; they lie in wait for prey, holding perfectly still for long periods and then exhibit remarkable acceleration as they strike. Pikes are often found near the exit of culverts, which can be attributed to the presence of schools of prey fish and the opportunity for ambush. Pike grow to a relatively large size; lengths of 59 in and weights of 55 lb are not unheard of.
The common name, "walleye," comes from the fact that their eyes, like those of cats, reflect light. The fish's eyes also allow them to see well in turbid waters (stained or rough, breaking waters) which gives them an advantage over their prey. Thus, walleye anglers will commonly look for days and locations where there is a good "walleye chop" (i.e., rough water). This excellent vision also allows the fish to populate the deeper regions in a lake and they can often be found in deeper water, particularly during the warmest part of the summer. Walleye are a dark-olive color with an over-all golden brown mottling and a white belly. A black blotch on the lower rear portion of the front dorsal fin helps identify the walleye.Walleyes grow to about 30 inches in length, and weigh up to about 15 lb. Because of its nocturnal feeding habits, it is most easily caught at night using live minnows or lures that mimic small fish.
White Bass is somewhat similar in appearance to the white perch, though larger. Its back is dark, with white sides and belly, and with narrow darkish stripes running lengthwise on the sides. The average fish ranges from 10 to 16 inches in length, and usually weighs from 1 to 4 pounds, though larger ones are sometimes taken. The world record is 6 lb (2.7 kg). 13 ounces. Also known as sand bass, sandies, and silvers, white bass often travel in schools, chasing baitfish in lakes and large rivers. As a result, they are rarely associated with cover and prefer to swim in clear water. They are visual feeders. When not frightened, they will bite readily at live bait such as worms and minnows. White bass have a strong homing tendency. They are known to find their home spawning ground even if it's moved to a different part of the same lake.
Yellow perch or, perch are a popular panfish and are considered to be very good to eat; the commercial catch for them has always been in high demand. They can be caught with a variety of methods, but the two best methods are perhaps float fishing and lure fishing. The best way is to use a small hook and cast into the weeds just before the drop off. They are a favorite among ice fisherman. Perch take a variety of baits, including minnows, worms, maggots, bread and softshell crayfish. Perch grow to around 5 lb or more, but the most common fish to be caught are around 1 lb or less, and anything over 2 lb is considered a prize catch. The record perch is 6lb, beating the previous one by 1 oz.
Devils Lake is the largest natural body of water in North Dakota. Covering more than 160,000 acres it has hundreds of miles of shoreline. This very fertile prairie lake grows large numbers of Walleye, Northern Pike, White Bass and it has earned the reputation of being the “Perch Capital of the World” and has been ranked as one of the top five fishing lakes in the US. Perch weighing more than two pounds are caught quite frequently. In the fall hundreds of thousands of waterfowl migrate through the area and give both local and visiting hunters outstanding hunting opportunities. Devils Lake derives its name from the Native American name Miniwaukan (”Spirit Water”). Early explorers incorrectly translated the word to mean “Bad Spirit” and bolstered by the many legends of drowned warriors and lake monsters. The name evolved into Devils Lake.
Did you catch a whopper? Did your son/daughter/grandchild catch their first fish? Do you want to brag about your weekend on Devils Lake? Well, we want to see it! Send us your picture and information. We would love to celebrate your catch and your great time by highlighting your photographs on our websites and e-blasts! Submit your photo here!
Darkhouse Spearfishing on Devils Lake (information from the ND Game and Fish Department)
June 21-22, 2013 The 37th annual walleye tournament is right around the corner. Again this year, the tournament will start on Friday. It will run on Friday and Saturday, with Sunday as an optional fishing day due to inclement weather. The dates for this year’s tournament will be June 21 and 22, 2013. Early bird [...] [...] READ MORE
All docks have been placed in the water, at the Public Access Boat Ramp locations! To see a listing of the Ramps, please visit: http://ow.ly/lnFWT Happy Fishing! [...] READ MORE